Nobody expects to be involved in a crash. However, life happens, and a vehicular accident happens without prior notice. After an accident, the parties involved will likely knock on their insurance company’s doors to obtain assistance. For some, the process may be a relatively easy one. Unfortunately, for others, dealing with their insurance company can be frustrating, especially if they were at-fault for the accident. You may wonder whether your insurance may go up after a crash. Our skilled Ventura car accident lawyers at The Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth, PLC, invite you to keep reading as we answer this critical question.
What Can Cause My Insurance Rates to Increase?
Car insurance is one of those things that is better to have and not need it than needing it and not having it. Many may call car insurance a necessary evil. The fact is, every driver should carry their auto insurance at all times. There is no way to predict when, where, and how an accident may happen. If such a situation arises, you may be able to cover your losses. Imagine for a minute you are involved in a car crash, truck accident, or motorcycle accident resulting in catastrophic injuries. Without insurance, you would have to cover all costs out-of-pocket. You may be able to cover some expenses if you are involved in a minor accident. However, things can get out of control if you experience a severe crash.
Now, insurance companies will generally maintain their rates. However, it is important to understand that insurance companies may or may not make any changes depending on their policies. Nevertheless, your insurance company may spike their premium rate if you were involved in a crash. Furthermore, if you were at fault for the accident, insurance costs may skyrocket. California has one of the highest insurance percentage increases for at-fault drivers whose accident exceeds $2,000 in total damages. For instance, if you were responsible for the crash, you may experience more than a 60% increase in your insurance premium.
However, your premium increase does not end there. If you caused the accident and, as a result, other drivers suffered severe bodily injuries, you may be facing a further 10% increase in your insurance costs. Dealing with a 70% increase in your insurance premium can be extremely difficult, especially if you live paycheck by paycheck.
Can I Lower My Car Insurance Premium Costs After an Accident?
As we mentioned before, you may experience significant increments in your insurance premiums costs after an accident, especially if you were at fault. You may wonder whether there is a way for you to decrease your insurance costs after an accident. Fortunately, there are ways you can reduce your insurance costs by taking proactive steps. For instance, one of the ways you can reduce your insurance cost is by diligently reviewing your insurance coverage policy. This may sound counterintuitive for many people, especially after an accident. After all, what many people want is to solve their situation as fast as they can.
However, taking your time and reviewing your insurance contract can lead to benefits. For example, you can go through your insurance coverage to see if they provided you with an accident forgiveness clause. This is especially important since not all insurers may provide this type of provision in California.
If you are not satisfied with the way your insurance company is handling your situation, you are free to select another insurance company. Shopping for insurance is not fun. However, it may provide you with information you did not have the first time you bought insurance. This information may lead to an insurance that better reflects your needs. In other words, nothing can prevent you from moving to another insurance company if you are unhappy with your current one. It is also essential to note changing insurance companies will not adversely affect your credit score. Insurance companies will perform what is known as a “soft pull” on your credit history. Generally, soft pulls won’t affect your credit score.
Another effective way to reduce your insurance costs is by increasing your deductible. A deductible is the amount of money you will need to pay after the insurance company’s assistance kicks in. Increasing your deductible can give you the opportunity to reduce your insurance cost. However, this is a step you need to consider carefully. If you have enough income to increase your deductible in a way that it makes a difference in your insurance costs, you should go for it.
How Can a Lawyer Assist Me After a Car Accident?
For many people, dealing with their insurance company is something they would rather avoid. However, taking this approach is not the safest nor most recommended action. A skilled car accident attorney can help you in such a situation. Retaining the services of a knowledgeable attorney can help you understand your rights, the process, and how to adequately address an insurance claim in California. Remember that after an accident – whether you were at fault or not – you should act quickly and without unnecessary delays. Every second counts when it comes to filing your insurance claim.
Auto Accident Attorneys Offering Free Consultations in Ventura and Santa Barbara
Dealing with a car accident in California can be difficult, especially if you have never been involved in a crash before. Your situation can be more stressful, knowing you will need to deal with your car insurance, particularly if you were at fault. Our Ventura personal injury attorneys can help you understand how an insurance claim works and guide you through the whole process. Additionally, we can help you know what your options may be after an accident. We understand how draining and overwhelming the process can be. That is why we dedicate our efforts to providing you with high-quality legal representation. To learn more about all of our services in a free, confidential consultation, call The Law Offices of Bamieh & De Smeth, PLC today at (805) 643-5555.